By Terence

I have always been fascinated by Chemistry – and I plan to be a scientist who can use my knowledge and skills in different industries and fields in the future.  I am in my fourth year of study in Chemistry at university, and though Chemistry is not everyone’s cup of tea – it is for me.

It has been a passion since I have been about nine years old.

Every class I take, every book I have to study, and every lecture I attend, I am looking at how I can apply that information in the future – and how that data relates to other things already learnt. It is highly technical information at this stage – but I am really enjoying it (I must admit).

I am surrounded by thousands of people, all studying and learning subjects that will, hopefully, give them the job or pathway they are looking for. What worries me is that many people flounder their way through university, not sure what they want to do in life, or how they are going to use their studies.

Many are not sure how what they are studying will lead to a future job – and they just go through their lectures and classes, doing their best to pass their exams.  And I have friends you have opted to take units that they are not actually interested in – but because they have other friends doing the same units, or because the subjects are politically correct (I won’t mention Environmental Sciences)!

I also have friends who are slogging through theory, trying to memorize key passages and produce essays that don’t have any applicability in life.

Now I am no angel, and certainly don’t hold myself up as better than anyone else – but my own results to date have been very good and I am convinced that is because of my own interest and passion in the subject I am studying.

I wish that universities had a requirement that any student actually had an interest in the subject they are studying – and would not just let people flounder along, never really deciding what they want to do – or how they want to do it.

From my experience it just adds up to people spending many years in university, accumulating a massive debt, but not actually learning something they can later apply in life.

If you have a child entering university, or a sibling, or a cousin, or a friend – take the time to help them discover what they are interested in – and where that interest can be focused. It sounds like a simple thing, because it is.

And study, without it, is not worth doing.

“The state of mind with which a student approaches study will determine the results that student gets from the study.

“The student must determine what he is going to do with the materials he is studying. He  must determine what he is going to do with the information he is absorbing.

“If a student’s intent is to study the materials so he can pass the exam he will be very incapable of doing anything with the subject once the exam is over. He might be a great theoretician, but he will not be able  to use the subject.

“Some students don’t have any intention other than getting through the course.

“They are just there studying away. They balk at doing demos or looking up words for their exact meaning. Even when forced to demonstrate something they maintain the attitude that it has nothing to do with them. ” It’s all very interesting to read but…. “

“Non-involvement is the primary barrier in the ability to apply the materials of a course.

“There can be many reasons for study. Points, exams, status, speed, glory, whatever.

“There is only one valid reason: Studying for understanding, application and practice.” LRH, Extract from the Student Hat Tapes

2 thoughts on “Why am I studying?

  1. This is incredibly true, often even among students in Scientology courserooms. Another shortcoming I’ve often seen is an inability to relate what one is studying with the basics of the subject one is studying, perhaps due to a lack of knowing those basics. It’s not enough to simply say, “Yes, the book says so, so that’s the way it is”. One has to ask *why* and *how* it is that way.

    And I agree with the original poster; much of a university education is filled with the study of material which is of no use to or interest to the student himself. The student is told he must have this many hours of this, that many hours of that, and he simply has no other choice. What a waste of time!

  2. This is going to be very politically incorrect. Look away now if you are likely to be offended.

    If there were a truly free market in education then students would not be able to get loans so easily, they have no track with which to judge their ability and honesty. University fees would be lower but they would still not be something a student would commit to paying for without a very good reason for studying the subject. There are many subjects where the student could find everything he needs on the internet and that would be a much cheaper course of study.

    There are few subjects where a potential employer will rely solely on some certified qualifications without any kind of test of actual ability. Anyone studying the arts or computer science should be able to put together a portfolio or samples of software they have developed. These things are of enormous value. Qualifications in the same fields are quickly outdated and of little value to start with unless you want a government job. In the real world where you will only be paid on your ability to provide valuable production qualifications are not the right currency.

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